The Proteas had earlier tightened their grip over the top spot in the ICC World Test Championship points table last week with an innings win against England at Lord's. However, England avenged that loss with an innings victory at Old Trafford this week.
Courtesy of the result at Old Trafford, Australia have become the new top-ranked team in the ICC World Test Championship points table. South Africa are now second with 66.67% points. Sri Lanka, India, Pakistan and West Indies retained their positions in the top six.
England continue to remain seventh but their points percentage has increased to 35.19. Captain Ben Stokes was the hero for England in the Old Trafford Test as his century and four wickets inspired his team to a win by an innings and 85 runs.
Speaking at the post-match presentation after winning the Man of the Match award, Stokes said:
"Amazing feeling, coming back to win here from that the loss in the first Test match, it sets the series up nicely in The Oval."
How will the 3rd Test between England and South Africa series impact the ICC World Test Championship points table?
The result of the final Test of this series will not have an immediate impact on the World Test Championship standings, but if the Proteas lose, their chances of qualifying for the final will be dented heavily. A loss in the third Test at the Oval would reduce South Africa's points percentage to 60.
A win, meanwhile, will help Dean Elgar and Co. boost their points to 70%, the same as Australia. On the other hand, if the match ends in a draw, South Africa's percentage will dip to 63. In all three scenarios, England will remain seventh with a points percentage of less than 40.
Who will win the third Test between South Africa and England starting September 8? Share your views in the comments below.